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tv   U.S. Senate 11292017  CSPAN  November 29, 2017 2:00pm-4:01pm EST

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business h.b.m. holdings in solution was also interviewed by n.a.m., the national association of manufacturers, people who make things. any time we get into that economy and strengthen that economy, we strengthen take-home pay.t but he was interviewed by n. amie. he was asked what this tax reform would mean to his business. he said, quote, tax reform will unleash investment, not just for us, but for our customers. that's where his quote ends, but that's a really important point to understand. when everybody is doing better, whatever you're doing is likely to get better as well. not only does the business get better for you, but suddenly the people you sell things to are more interested in also innovating and investing and improving. senate bill also recognizes a couple tools that really help us go in and revitalize areas that aren't doing so well. one called new market tax
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credits. new market tax credits have provided an effective incentive for the private sector to invest in communities outside the economic mainstream. now, these are usually communities that already have the sewer system and sidewalks and electrical systems. but they have building that no longer serve the purpose that they used to serve. and new market tax credits look at those buildings and other areas in our -- and in our state in missouri, new market tax credits have finance add manufacturer in hazelwood, a heating manufacturer in cuba, missouri, a plumbing fixture manufacturer, the first grocery store in more than a generation in pavesdale, missouri.
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this bill also recognized the importance of tax credits. talking to a businessman in st. joseph about that he made the point that st. joseph is an ordinarily community, an historic community, the westward movement, the wagon trains that outfitted there 150, 175 years ago. the stockyards thrived after the civil war. but those old buildings, many magnificent buildings, didn't have the kind of use that they used to have, but over the past ten years, historic tax credits have leveraged almost$100 million in tax credits in those elder buildings. restore and revitalized, distressed areas of a city -- a recent example is the restoration of a german-american building in st. joseph in the downtown asian a building that wouldn't have been able to be
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saved -- in the down town area, a building that wouldn't have been able to be saved without some special assistance was made available because of historic tax credits. and again not only is the historic building saved. but all of the services that were already there that served that building, wasn't being used, now serve a building that is being used. and they don't have to be replaced. the bottom line, mr. president, is this is a bill that will create a better future for american families, a better future for american jobs. this is an opportunity to do something that is hard to do and it only gets done once every 25 or 30 years. this is the moment. it is time to do this. we'll have a debate on the floor that lets everybody make every reasonable amendment -- reasonable -- not that it might be reasonable to do it, but reasonable in that it deals with taxes. and you figure out some way to
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pay for it. so you reduce something here, add something there. that's what this debate will be. we've talked about this for years and intensely for months. it is time to get the job donald trump and i would yield the floor, mr. president. -- it is time to get the job done. and i would yield the floor, mr. president. ms. stabenow: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from michigan. ms. stabenow: thank you, mr. president. i am actually going to speaker a moment about something other than the tax provisions. i have to say with my friend from missouri, we may not agree on the tax provisions, but we do agree on what i am going to to be talking about today, which is community health centers and children's health insurance. i am hopeful as the senator was talking about new market tax credits and historic preservation, that they don't get hurt in this process at all. i know there is work to get done on this to make sure is doesn't
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happen. but i appreciate working very closely with my colleague from missouri on what i want to talk about today. i rise today to draw attention to the way the senate majority is failing children and families in michigan and all across the country. it's now been 60 days, mr. president -- nearly two months -- 60 days since republicans let funding expire for the children's health insurance program and community health centers. 60 days. and it doesn't have to be this way because we have bipartisan support to be able to continue the funding for both of these programs. now, we also can't say we haven't had time. during these 60 days, the republican leadership has found time for us to work on plenty of other issues. they've passed their budget. they've taken 75 floor votes.
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republicans introduced their tax plan, which is now before us and we're spending time this week on that. and, by the way, they rewrote their tax plan in a way that would cause 13 million people to lose their health insurance. and the senate has considered 24 nominees. but republicans haven't taken any action to ensure that the nine million children who have health insurance from the children's health insurance program can continue to get medical care, even though we have bipartisan support. in the middle of all the division going on on the floor right now, we could bring something to the floor that would have bipartisan support and do the right thing for families and for children and make sure that we're taking away the anxiety that families are feeling now across the country about what's going to happen. so nine million children right
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now at risk because of inaction. chip provides children are low- and moderate-income working families with affordable health care. these are families that are working. they don't qualify for other kinds of help. these are working families. sometimes one job, sometimes two jobs, part-time jobs trying to hold it together. they want to be able to take their child to the doctor. they want the peace of mind that comes from knowing that if their child gets hurt, if they get sick, they can take them to a doctor. and in addition, the senate majority hasn't taken any action on another very important community health care program to ensure that 25 million people who count on community health centers will continue to have a place to go when they get hurt, when they get sick, to take their child, to take their parent.
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and included among those 25 million patients are 300,000 of our veterans -- 300,000 veterans -- 7.5 million children that rely on health centers in our communities. you know, i've often said health care is personal, not political. there's nothing more personal than wake up in the middle of the night because your child is crying and they're sick. nothing more personal than worrying about whether or not you're going to be able to get them the care that they need. nothing more personal than wanting to know that you have a health care provider in your community who can help you or a family member manage your chronic conditions -- high blood pressure, diabetes, other things. so that you don't find yourself gettingetting sicker -- gettingr and sicker and sicker.
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each unone of these 9 million americans will being personally let down by this inaction. as indicated before, beaver it doesn't have to be this way. we can take action today. we have bipartisan support right now, bipartisan cosponsorship right now. we could stop the divisive debate and take a moment to do something really important for families and children before the holiday season. right now we could ensure that families and children know that the children's health insurance program will continue in the new year and that they're going able to go to their community health center and get the care this they need for themselves and their family. i was really proud of the fact that senator hatch, our distinguished chairman of the finance committee, and senator i woulddential our distinguished ranking member, and all of us on
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the committee came together to put together a bipartisan children's health insurance program extension for five year, came out of committee with only one senator voting no. i was hoping that that was going to get done right away. why wouldn't it? it is something that could sail through here. and to that, 70 members of this body, led by senator blunt and myself, we signed a letter of support for continuing funding for community health centers and now senator blunt and i have put in legislation -- bipartisan legislation -- with eight other democrats and eight other republicans to extend funding for five years. i know if this came up on the floor we could get this done today and ease the worries of families that are beginning to getting ins across the -- getting to get notices across the country that their health
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insurance for themselves and their children going to run out. these programs have long had strong bipartisan support. why can't we get the action on this? -- that these families and children deserve? but instead, families continue to wait every day. 660 days. i truly thought back in september that this is something that would be enough a priority that it could get done amid all the other things brought to the floor of the senate. but now the clock ticks every day, every day. this is wrong. we need to put these children and these families first. we might be 60 days late, but there's no reason we can't act today or tomorrow before the end of the week to make these children and families a top priority. before chip, too many hardworking families in michigan couldn't afford to take their
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children to the doctor. today 100,000 children are covered by my child, which we call our children's health insurance program. 100,000 children. and with all the efforts to provide affordable health care that are going on in michigan right now, successful ends, 97% of the children in michigan today can now see a doctor. 97%. there are at tempt -- they are at the moment not having to go an emergency room and wait hours and hours and hours or have their parents try to figure out what they can do to help them when they get sick. 97% of our children can now see a doctor, the highest level ever. and we should be proud of that. that's a good thing. yet unless congress acts soon, my child will begin running out of funding as early as january. which is not very far away. happy new year, lose your health insurance. january will also be a bad month
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for michigan's community health centers. nearly 20,000 people will lose access to health care. 20,000 people in michigan 0 who now are able to go to a community health center would see that access to health care go away, with thousands more dropped each month. last year michigan's community health centers treated more than 60,000 patient -- 680,000 patients. 608,000 people -- 680,000 people, including 12, 710 of our veterans. they died from coronary artery disease. more than 24,000 michigan residentresidents were diagnoseh asthma and began to get help. they were diagnosed with diabetes and got help. all of those health conditions can be managed. we know that. if you have access to a doctor,
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to nurses, medications, you can manage those kinds of chronic diseases. however, they can be deadly if they are undiagnosed and untreated. just ask william. he didn't have a regular doctor after moving to jackson, michigan, from chicago. but one morning he knew he needed one of the woke up feeling lightheaded so he went to the center for family health, a great facility. he discovered they his blood pressure was high, so high, in fact, that he was in danger of having a heart attack or a stroke. it took about a year for william's doctors to find the right combination of medications to control his blood pressure, but they were able to do that. he's been getting his care at the center for family health ever since. they literally saved his life.
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emily from rochester hills, has her own story. emily's dad was laid out off from two separate jobs within three years, at a time when her mom was working a part-time job that didn't provide insurance. that's a very common story for a lot of hardworking folks in michigan. as well as across the country. thankfully emily and her brothers and sisters had health insurance through my child. it covered their sclerosis and asthma, a seizure disorder and typical children's health insurance issues like bronchitis and broken bones. emily's words are: the children's health insurance program was a life saver for my siblings and me. i can't imagine the stress that my parents dealt with during that time and how we would have survived so well without the
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program. emily and william know that chip and community health centers make lifesaving differences for people in michigan as well as across the country. we're 60 days late, but there's no time like the present to get this done. 60 days late. but we don't have to make it 61. our children and our families should be put at the top of the list for action. not at the bottom. it's time to make things right for the nine million children who rely on the children's health insurance program and the 25 million people who use community health centers. we shouldn't let one more day go by without acting. we can do this now. there is bipartisan support to get this done, and our children
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and our families deserve to have this done as quickly as possible. thank you, mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from south dakota. mr. thune: mr. president, i don't need to tell anybody that american families have had a tough time in recent years. weak economic growth, stagnant wages and a lack of opportunities have left many americans struggling just to get by s. -- get by.
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but a fine point on that, mr. president, during the entire years of the obama presidency, there wasn't a single year where the growth rate in the economy exceeded 3%. if you go back to the end of world war ii, oonge -- average economic growth in this country averaged somewhere in the 3% to 3.5% range. in the entire eight years of the obama presidency not a single year, not one year where economic growth exceeded 3%. what did that mean for american workers? it meant that their wages stayed flat. in many cases up until recently american families haven't had a pay raise for the better part of a decade as a result of a sluggish, anemic, slow-growth economy that wasn't creating the good paying jobs or wage levels that allowed american families to benefit from increasing incomes. a recent survey found that 50% of americans consider themselves
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to be living paycheck to paycheck, and that makes perfect sense if you look at the economic statistics, the economic record of the past eight years. about a third of those same americans say they're just $400 away from a financial crisis. well, mr. president, real help is on the way. this week we will bring the senate version of comprehensive tax reform to the senate floor. the legislation that we have produced will provide immediate direct relief to hardworking americans. but that's not what you're hearing of democrats. here's what you're hearing democrats say about the senate plan. and i'll just contrast that with the facts, what's really true. mr. president, here's what you've heard. that republicans have somehow drafted this secret tax plan behind closed doors and forcing it through the voting process much too fast. no doubt you've heard this as well. the senate tax bill raises taxes on the lower and middle-class americans while cutting taxes
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for the rich. here's an interesting attack coming from my colleagues on the other side of the aisle as well who have in the past not been considered budget hawks. that the senate tax bill somehow is a budget buster that irresponsibly increases the deficit. well, first off, let me address that question, mr. president. the answer to the deficit question is that this is a $5.5 trillion tax cut. 70% of the tax cut is paid for by ending loopholes and special exemptions in the tax code today, what we call base broadenners, it broadens the base by doing away with some of the preferences that exist in the code today. the joint committee on taxation says that with a static score, we will have about a $1.4 trillion delta to cover. well, assuming that we use current tax policy -- and we normally do extend current tax policy -- we believe the remaining cost of the tax cut will be covered through
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increased economic growth. what does that mean? what kind of growth do we have to achieve in the economy in order to have the kind of growth that would enable this tax relief above and beyond what we've done in terms of base broad ners and pay-fors to be covered? the congressional budget office is forecasting 1.8% growth over the next ten years. again as i mentioned earlier, we didn't have good growth in the last eight years under the obama administration. we were averaging 1.5% to 2% growth and the congressional budget office is forecasting currently 1.8% growth for the next ten years. well, i can't believe that that would be acceptable to people in this country, mr. president. the greatest economy on the face of the earth growing at less than 2% a year, that cannot be the new normal. we have to do better than that. well, if we get just 2.2% to
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2.4% growth with this bill, we will have covered the remaining cost of the tax cut. the amount that i pointed out earlier is not covered in terms of base broadeners and pay fors and offsets that assumes a reasonable amount of growth to get the growth necessary to cover the cost of that tax cut is 2.2% to 2.4%. again, put in perspective going back to the end of world war ii, the economy in this country has averaged 3% to 3.5% growth. it's only in the last decade where we've had heavy taxes, heavy regulations, policies that have created conditions that are not favorable for that kind of growth where we've the gotten stuck in this malaise of 1.5% to 2.%. if we can get 2.2% to 2.4% growth in the economy, we will cover the remaining cost of this tax cut. in reality, mr. president, what my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, when they say that this is going to add to the deficit, they're saying
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that our country cannot grow at 2.2% to 2.4% a year for the next ten years. they've gotten used to the low, slow, sluggish, anemic growth and have accepted that as the new normal. mr. president, i don't accept that as the new normal. the american people shouldn't accept that as the new normal because we are selling our country, the greatest economy in the world, woefully short when we find it satisfactory that the economy can grow at less than 2%. as i said, since world war ii we've averaged over 3% growth. mr. president, after such a long period of stagnant growth, i understand how my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are resigned to accept this as the new normal, but i think i can speak for all of our republican colleagues here when i say that we can do much better than we did during the obama years. we can and will grow at a faster rate on account of this tax
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reform bill. why? because when you reduce taxes, you allow people to keep more of what they earned. instead of growing the government in washington,d.c., you start growing the economy. when you reduce taxes on businesses, those businesses invest. they expand their rption 0s. when they expand their operation, it means they have to hire new people. the demand for labor raises the price of labor. wages go up. paychecks get bigger. that's what happens. it also means the government generates more revenue. when the economy is growing at a faster rate, people are, they're working, they're paying taxes. people who have invested are taking their realizations and that raises tax revenues in this country. we can and will grow at a faster, mr. president, if we can put the right economic policies in place starting with this tax reform bill. we can create those new good-paying jobs, keep existing jobs from moving overseas, and we can see wages in this country go up and finally give americans a much-needed break in their
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paychecks. mr. president, we can get the economy growing again and generate enough revenue to cover the remaining 30% cost of this tax reform bill. this bill has been put together after many, many years of hearings and work. democrats argue that this is somehow cooked up in a short amount of time, but i joined the senate finance committee in 2011. since i went on the committee, we've had 70-plus hearings on tax reform. two years ago, in 2015, the chairman of the that committee, senator hatch, created a number of working groups to examine various aspects of the tax code. i had the privilege of chairing one of those groups along with senator cardin, a democrat on the other side of the aisle, and we looked at and examined the business part of the tax code to try and determine what sorts of recommendations we could make that would get the economy growing at a faster rate and generate those better-paying jobs.
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there were five groups like that all of which made recommendations, much of which forms the basis for the tax bill that we are considering today. so we have been working on this for years, mr. president, to get to where we are today. a lot of thought, a lot of analysis, a lot of work has gone into the legislation that we will be voting on later this week. mr. president, we made it a focus of this tax reform legislation, delivering meaningful tax relief to middle-class families who we believe know better how to spend their money than the federal government here in washington, d.c. does. if we can make the american families' paycheck bigger, they can decide what they want to do to help themselves and their families save for college education perhaps, save for a more secure requirement, take care of the daily needs that they have in their lives. the fundamental premise is that we trust the american people to make those decisions and that we believe after the last decade of
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stagnant wages and a slow and sluggish economy, that they deserve a pay raise, that they deserve to have a bigger paycheck than they do today. and so reducing tax rates, doubling the standard deduction, doubling the child tax credit, which were all features of the senate bill, all benefits of the senate bill, are things that will help allow these families to keep more of what they earn. the average family in this country under this legislation that we will consider -- when i say average family, typical family of four, combined annual income of $73,000, will receive a $2,200 -- i should say tax cut as a result of this tax legislation. that's a 60% tax cut over what they are paying today under current law. so, mr. president, if you look at the way this impacts middle-class families in this country, doubling the standard deduction, doubling the child tax credit, lowering rates are
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all policies that will inure to the benefit of middle-income families in this country. they deserve to keep more of what they own. they deserve bigger paychecks. this tax cut will do that for them in addition to creating the growth in the economy that we need to see if we're going to get those better-paying jobs generated and get wages back up to where american families are enjoying a higher standard of living and higher standard of life than they are today. we need to get back to 3.5% growth. we can do that with the right policies. it starts by passing the kind of tax reform that we have in front of us today that will lower rates on businesses, lower rates on families, double that standard deduction, double that child tax credit and allow american families and american workers to get the benefit of keeping more of their paychecks, more of the hard-earned money in their own pockets and the benefit of higher wages that will come with
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a stronger, more robust economy that's growing at a faster rate than what we see today. mr. president, that's what's at stake in the discussion over tax reform. i hope that before the week is out that we will get the votes that are necessary to pass this, to go to conference with the house of representatives who have already passed their version of tax reform, and to put a bill on the president's desk that he can sign into law before the end of this year that moves us in a direction that provides meaningful tax relief for middle-income families in this country and create the conditions favorable for economic growth that will create better-paying jobs and higher wages. the american people deserve better than 1 .5% to 2% growth. they deserve a pay raise, not a pay cut and that's what this tax reform bill will help accomplish. mr. president, i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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quorum call:
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mr. nelson: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from florida. mr. nelson: mr. president, i ask that the quorum call be lifted. the presiding officer: without
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objection. mr. nelson: mr. president, i'm here to discuss the tax bill. what we've done before and have now in front of us is not what the american people want, it's what large corporations want -- large multinational corporations who get their corporate tax rate cut from 35% to 20%. it's what the well to do want -- well-to-do want. that's what's before us. now, let me explain. anyone who says that this bill is all for the middle class is not giving the full story. what they are not telling you is that the tax cuts for the middle class expire in seven or eight years. that's not what's being told.
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folks are not telling you that this bill will put small business at a competitive disadvantage making it easier for large multinational corporations to crush local small businesses. and i say this as the senator from florida said small business, that is the economic backbone of our state, not the large multinational corporations. what people are not telling you is that this bill will cause health care premiums to go up by 10% and will force 13 million people to lose their health insurance. and that's according to an independent analysis by c.b.o.,
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the congressional budget office. and folks are not telling you that this bill will send thousands of jobs, american jobs overseas. it's not a jobs bill. it's a bill that's going to send jobs overseas because the tax rate for income produced overseas for large multinational corporations is going to be less than the tax rate for those same corporations producing the income in america. this is exactly what's in the bill. they're not telling you all the other ways that c.b.o. says that this bill will hurt ordinary americans. so, for example, beginning in 2019, c.b.o. says that anyone
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making under $30,000 a year will take a hit from this bill if it becomes law. then in 2021, anyone making under $40,000 will start to feel the pinch. and then in 2027, anyone making under $75,000 is actually going to get a tax increase. that's what folks are not telling you. but that is what is in print in the bill. and all the while the big multinational corporations and those at the economic top will continue to reap the benefits of tax cuts.
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now, this is not fooling. this is what the bill says. so once folks find out what's in this bill, there's going to be a day of reckoning. the question is, when are they going to find out. are they going to wait until they see that everybody in about seven years, everybody earning under $75,000 is actually getting a tax increase? well, what the bill needs is balance. now, this senator's a member of the finance committee, and we tried to add balance in the committee. but our republican colleagues insisted on voting down every democratic amendment that was brought up only making changes
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on the margin to say that they had gone through regular order. an amendment of this senator's to increase the child tax credit was voted down 14-12. meantime, the real bill is being written in secret by one party with a new iteration to change it coming out almost every other day. i wish i were kidding, but in fact it came out the week before thanksgiving that the next monday we started marking up. then a new version came out on tuesday. a new version came out on wednesday. and then in the markup on
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thursday before the thanksgiving week, lo and behold there was a new version with a so-called manager's amendment. the bill starts changing colors with each new version trying to top the last in what it is doing to the middle class. this isn't the way that we should be doing the people's business. we ought to be coming together to find a way to negotiate a tax bill that works for most americans, not pit red states versus blue states or make it harder for cities to invest in infrastructure or we shouldn't have a tax bill that makes health care less affordable and takes away health care from 13 million people and on top of all of this, that increases the
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national debt by almost $1.5 trillion on top of the $20 trillion of national debt. what the american people want is for us to work together, to work in bipartisan compromise, but what we have is the opposite of that. the american people want the best way to ensure a good outcome for the widest majority of americans. and i dare say if we put a tax bill on this floor in a bipartisan way, it would end up having 70 to 80 votes out of a hundred senators in a big resounding bipartisan vote.
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but that's not the course that has been chosen. i want to give one other examp example. some senators are being told that the health insurance part of this bill that ends up raising rates by 10% and taking health insurance away from 13 million americans, they're saying that in a series of bills that this senator has worked in a bipartisan fashion with, some of them being initiated in a bipartisan way out of the help committee by senator alexander and senator murray, some are saying that those bills, including a bill that this senator has cosponsored with
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senator collins to establish a reinsurance fund in which some states it is already the use of it has lowered premiums by 20%, some say that all of those fixes to the affordable care act will completely overshadow and take away the health insurance premiums that this tax bill has that c.b.o. has said raises premiums 10%. that argument has been made why some republican senators should vote for this tax bill. but in fact c.b.o., the congressional budget office, came out today with a letter saying that that is not true,
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that the rates on what's being done in this tax bill on health insurance will still go up 10% almost every year for the next ten years. that's not this senator saying that. that's in a letter november 29 by congressional budget office. so what we ought to do is how the last major tax bill was passed. it was way back in 1986. it was when ronald reagan was president and the speaker of the house tip o'neal, two old irishmen who used to fight like the dickens but they had a personal friendship. they had a personal relationship
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that they could cut through all the political differences when it was time to get things done, and they could do a bipartisan consensus. they found a way in 1986 to do it. and the middle class was the one that benefited. so we know it can be done. it's been done before. this isn't 1986. this is 2017. things have changed. it's gotten a lot more partisan around here. it's gotten a lot more ideologically rigid, but when you're doing major tax bills that affect one-sixth of the american economy, isn't it time to revert to what we did back in 1986 where we came together in
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bipartisan consensus. as long as there is a will, there is a way. and what i hope in the midst of this extreme toxic atmosphere of high partisanship that we might find a will to cut through that and say indeed there is way and it is a bipartisan way. we just need willing partners on both sides. i pray that that will occur between now and christmas before we do something that we are going to regret so that we can do something for the american economy and so we can do something for the american people, that they finally say this is the way i want our public servants to act. i want them to act in consensus
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building in a bipartisan or nonpartisan way. i hope that that will be our christmas present. mr. president, i yield the floor. i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from west virginia. mrs. capito: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent to vitiate the quorum call. the presiding officer: without objection. mrs. capito: thank you. thank you, mr. president. i come to the floord today to voice my -- floor today to voice my very strong support for the tax reform legislation that will come before this united states senate this week. this bill will empower and power our economic growth and provide great opportunities for american workers. it will also lead to increased wages. it will help our small businesses expand. i have said often on the senate floor that small businesses in
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west virginia comprise 95% of the businesses in west virginia and over 50% of the workforce. small businesses want to thrive and they want to expand. it will provide much needed tax relief for middle-class working families in my state and across this nation, and it will also for many in the working class, the increase in the standard deduction will lower rates and provide a much simpler process. i've talked about this on the floor a lot. one of the things underemphasized in this great tax relief package is the simplification model that many americans want and deserve in the tax code. let's talk about my state of west west. in my state -- west virginia. in my state 83% take the standard deduction. this bill will nearly double that deduction from 6300 to
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12,000. that's for 83% of the filers in my state of west virginia. for a west virginian taking the current standard deduction, the provision means less taxable income and a lower tax bill. more money in their pockets at the end of the day that they've earned. others who itemize will find that they are better off with an increased standard deduction. at tax time they'll make the determination, should i take the standard deduction i used to itemize in the past? they may make the determination they are better off taking the standard deduction because it's almost doubling, that's what they will do. it will avoid the complications that come along with itemizing. families with children will benefit from ale child tax credit that is doubled. this provides real help to working families trying to
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afford education costs, pay rent or their mortgage, and simply make it to the end of the month. whether they want to put money aside for their future or they need money to get through the tough cost of child care or health costs, this more money is a significant factor in a lot of people's families. they are working hard and want and deserve more money. there was an editorial in my local newspaper today in a negative way about this bill, and it's funny, but it's not humorous, they actually don't mention this for the 83% of west virginia earners that are going to be having the benefits of this simply by doubling the standard deduction and by doubling the child tax credit. this eliminates the affordable care act mandate which is a penalty that mainly impacts the middle class. let's talk about this. in 2015, more than 34,000 west
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virginians were personalized under this mandate. 81% of those people -- 81% of the 34,000 people -- who were penalized with a tax penalty because they chose or couldn't afford to buy insurance for chose not to, they were assessed a tax penalty for that decision and 81% of those people earn under $50,000 a year. there's been a lot of misinformation about this provision. let me clarify. no one is being forced off medicaid or at private health insurance plan by the elimination of the individual mandate. by eliminating the individual mandate, we're simply stop personal easing and taxing people who either can't afford or decide not to buy a health insurance plan. i, for one, want as many people -- everyone to purchase and to be able to purchase a health insurance plan, but that's a personal decision at
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the end of the day that a family makes. and if you opt not to purchase, which i would hope you wouldn't, your government shouldn't be taxing you, and that's what happened. working families will also benefit for the higher wages and increased opportunities that this bill will create. the tax foundation found that this bill will create more than 4,900 jobs in the state of west virginia. it doesn't sound like much, i guess, to a large state, but to a small state, almost 5,000 jobs is significant. a small family would see their after-tax grow. and it could create as many as 9,000 jobs in this analysis. these new jobs and higher wages result, in part, from lower tax rates and the shift to a territorial system that will make america more competitive.
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we want our jobs to be competitive not just here but globally. let's face it. we're in a global economy. many of the companies -- particularly the larger companies employing 30% of west virginia workers, are competing globally. if we can make it more competitive for those businesses to compete globally, that will be higher wages, more jobs, more products made here in the united states with our american workers. quite frankly, our current system now is driving american companies and jobs overseas. the united states has the highest statutory corporate tax rate in the trillionize -- in the industrialized world. that drives behavior -- that drives behavior when you look at investing. after 30 years -- 30 years was the last time we modernized this -- after 30 years is it past time to modernize our tax
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code. it is time to invest more capital. we know, and some of these estimates say they are conservative, there is more than two trillion, with a t, $2 trillion in corporate earnings kept overseas. this tax reform package could bring these resources home, leading again to more jobs and higher wages here at home. it is important that communities across our country benefit from this growing economy. half of our nation's job growth since 2010 -- since 2010, almost eight years ago -- half of our job growth has only occurred in 2% of the counties. half of our nation's job growth since 2010 has occurred in only 2% of our counties across this country. i'll add that none of those counties are in the state of
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west virginia. that demonstrates to me the need that in order to help lower-income areas, we need to attract more investment, more opportunity to create more jobs. that's why i'm very glad to support this tax reform bill because it also includes a provision called the investing in opportunity act that senator tim scott from south carolina introduced and i was a proud cosponsor. this bill is designed as part of this tax reform bill to attract investment into areas that have been left behind in our nation's economic recovery, including areas like my state of west virginia that continue to struggle in the wake of the obama administration's anti-coal policies. besides making the tax code more competitive and helping to create and attract investment to economically distressed areas, this bill will also help our small businesses. we know that small businesses are a major economic driver in
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our economy. as i said earlier, half of west virginia's workforce in the private sector is employed in a small business. so this bill will provide significant needed tax relief to our small businesses. i've been traveling across the state listening to small business roundtables, talking to a lot of people, and what i heard small businesses, they are eager to take the tax relief they get to raise wages. they want to hire more additional workers so they expand their work or buy new equipment. i met a communications company that wants to invest in more i.t. these investments will have a positive effect on the local community, those that are not in the 2%. i believe this are tax reform bill will help the nation as a whole and the people i represent. i am excited to this have -- to have this bill on the floor of
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the united states senate this week. senate finance committee, which our, the president is a terrific member from the neighboring state of pennsylvania, has held over 70 hearings on tax reform and put together a very good piece of legislation after listening for 70 hearings, many amendment process, many constituents, many individuals who are impacted by this. the house has acted. president trump stands ready to sign a tax reform measure into law. what remains now is for the senate to do their work, for us to do our work, pass this legislation. some senators will have a choice. soon senators will make a choice. we can accept slow economic growth that has occurred over the past decade or we can take big and bold action. so to my colleagues i say if you
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want to help the middle class benefit from tax cuts, higher wages, and more job opportunities, then you should vote for this bill. if you want america to become more competitive in the global economy, then you should vote for this bill. if you want small businesses to expand and thrive, then you should vote for this bill. our country needs this. our constituents are demanding it, and i call on my colleagues to join with me to pass this bill on the senate floor this week. with that, i yield the floor and note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from maryland. a senator: i would ask consent the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. a senator: mr. president, most of my time in the united states senate, i have been on the senate finance committee that deals with our tax code. mr. cardin: most of my time in the house of representatives i served on the house winter games and means committee that dealt with our tax code and quite frankly, i thought there were three guiding principles in regards to tax reform that both democrats and republicans felt were essential. and really i thought were beyond being controversial. and that is that if we're going to have tax relief, the focus must be on the middle class, that in today's economic circumstances, we would not want to have tax reform add to the deficit, and that we need to use an open process, a bipartisan process for tax reform so that
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we have the opportunity for all stakeholders to understand exactly what we're doing so we don't have any unattended -- any unintended consequences. mr. president, as i look at the bill being brought to the floor by the senate budget committee, it violates all three, all three of these basic principles. first in regards to providing relief to middle-income taxpayers. the joint committee on tax has looked at this bill, and that's the objective score keeper. you may not like what they say, but you've got to be a knowledge that this is the objective numbers that look at exactly who benefits from the tax provisions. it's an interesting analysis that they do, that those that are in the top income tax brackets -- and we're using about half a million people -- in 2019 this group of a half a million people will receive $34
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billion in tax relief. half a million taxpayers. that same year those taxpayers that have income under $50,000 which amounts to about 90 million taxpayers in this country or about 180 times the number of people will receive about 30% of that amount of benefits, about $14 billion in that year. and let me tell you something. that analysis does not take into consideration who benefits from the estate tax changes in the bill that's going to be brought before us. and i must tell you, i doubt that there are any taxpayers under $50,000 a year that would benefit from increasing the four million type base that we currently have in our estate tax. and it does not include the joint committee on tax did not include the impact of the repeal of the individual mandate for
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health coverage which affects the funds going into health premiums, support, and medicaid which again goes to lower-income families. so the figures i gave you are conservative figures. it's much more skewed towards higher income than even the committee's analysis in 2019. let me point out one more thing about this number. 2019 is the most favorable year for middle-income taxpayers. it gets worse every year thereafter. the bill is not targeted towards middle-income. it's targeted to the wealthy. and look at some of the reasons. itself estate tax repeal helps wealthy people. alternative minimum tax, those in the highest incomes that are required to pay some taxes, that's repealed. the fact that the business tax relief is made permanent but the individual relief has a sunset,
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terminates after eight years. so the congressional budget office has told us exactly who will pay more taxes. and this is pretty interesting. in 2019 those at the lowest income tax brackets, urt $30 -- under $30,000 will actually pay more taxes. they're not getting a tax cut. if you look at 2021, two years later, those under $40,000 are not -- are going to pay more taxes. and you go all the way up to 2027, those under $75,000, the majority, will pay more taxes. so this bill which is being advertised by my republican colleagues as benefiting all taxpayers, no, it doesn't benefit all taxpayers. in my state it's estimated that 800,000 marylanders will pay more taxes under this bill in 2027. it particularly affects those in middle-income that are going to
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be put at a disadvantage. the people who are protected are those at the high income level. to add just one more complication to idle -- to middle-income taxpayers, there's also not even a subtle attack on medicaid, medicare, and other programs that are important for middle-income families. job training programs dealing with education, et cetera, all are going to be jeopardized because of the way this bill is funded. so on the first test, is this bill aimed at middle-income taxpayers? the answer is no. it fails. on the second test, are we financing this tax cut by increasing the debt, asking our children and grandchildren to pay for this tax cut? the answer is clearly yes. by its own admission, the budget instructions tell us that we're going to have a $1.5 trillion deficit as a result of this tax
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bill. and that's not the whole picture, mr. president. we know there's at least $1.5 trillion of new debt if this bill becomes law. but as i'm sure my colleagues are aware, there are many provisions in this bill that have sunsets, that terminate. but it's the anticipation that those sunsets will be extended. for example, the business expensing or the credits for family and medical leave. there's quite -- it's quite comfortable that many people are advertising this as a way of fitting a more expensive bill into a $1.5 trillion deficit not making it larger when in reality when we extend those extenders, you find that the deficit will be at least a half a trillion dollars more. so we're really talking about a $2 trillion hole in the deficit. and to make matters even worse, we do have a trigger that's being recommended that's in the bill itself, but that trigger would extend more tax relief, not less.
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so this bill fails in the second test and that is it creates a major hole in the deficit. third test is whether this is truly a bipartisan open process. here no one can say with a straight face the answer is yes. the majority, the republicans, are using reconciliation which is by definition a partisan process. there's no real opportunity for open debate or hearings or amendments. the amendments are all contrived under the reconciliation restrictions. and does anyone here believe at the end of the day the majority leader is not going to offer a new bill at the 11th hour with no time to debate, where we vote up or down which will be the final product that we are going to be asked to approve. so on all three tests, this bill coming out of the budget committee fails. but then it goes beyond that.
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there was a late edition in the senate finance committee that repealed the individual mandate under the affordable care act. now, quite frankly, one would wonder how did that ever get into a tax bill? why would this be put into a tax bill? the congressional budget office tells us that it will add 13 million americans to the uninsured rolls by 2027, 13 million. these are individuals who will not be able to get access to quality health care. if they run into a major health episode, they're going to either have to sell all of their assets or go into bankruptcy or be denied care. i think we should be concerned about those 13 million. but in addition, these individuals where you don't have health insurance and you can't go to a doctor, you end up in our emergency rooms in a much more expensive way and guess who pays the bill? we all do.
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we pay for it through higher hospital rates. those of us who have insurance, those of us who pay our bills are going to be paying for those who don't pay their bills. so the fact that we are eliminating the individual mandate doesn't just affect 13 million and it does affect those 13 million. it affects all of us who will be paying more through cost shifting. and, quite frankly, what is really aggravating as to why this is in the bill, it's in the bill because it gets scored as a tax savings. there's more revenue coming in. more revenue coming in, you're going to spend less on health care subsidies, less on medicaid. and the bill spends that money. so we're using cuts to middle-income families and health care to finance permanent tax relief no businesses in this country. where are our priorities? that makes no sense whatsoever. there are individual changes
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that are being recommended in this bill that are going to have very dire consequences. i want to mention one. i spent a good deal of my life in public office at the state level. and i believe very much in federalism. i believe that state legislators are trying to do what's right for their taxpayers as we're trying to do what's right for the same taxpayers. and federalism says that we respect each level of government. but by eliminating the state and local tax deductions, we're telling taxpayers they have to pay taxes on taxes, that we don't respect our states and local governments, and that you can no longer deduct your state taxes or your local property taxes, that again is an insult, i think, to the constitution and federalism. it also, by the way, will hurt taxpayers. in my home state, almost 50% of marylanders use the state and local tax deduction and if the senate bill becomes law, all of
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them will lose that ability to deduct state and local taxes on their federal income tax returns. it will affect the ability of our states and local governments to finance the necessary functions of government, whether it's to keep people safe or whether it is to provide schools for our children. i heard this past weekend from different charitable groups who told me if the senate bill becomes law, it will have a dramatic impact on private giving. why? because under the senate bill, only 5%, only 5% of the taxpayers in this country will be able to get a tax deduction from charitable contributions. think about that for one moment. because we pride ourselves in the services that are provided by the private sector, services on health care, services in education, services in public --
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in social services, in the arts. all that depends upon the generosity of the private givers and yet we're saying that only 5% of the population of this country will have any tax incentive to give charitable gifts. that's going to have a major negative impact on charitable contributions. and then the value of our credits that we have out there for economic growth, i'm very proud of the public-private partnerships that we have in maryland. i'm sure my colleagues are proud of those private-public partnerships in pennsylvania, in every state in this country. but the credits that we give are going to be worth a lot less if the senate bill becomes law making it much more difficult to put together a venture that can redevelop vulnerable communities around our nation. let me just add one or two points before yielding the floor i think what we all wanted to
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accomplish through tax reform is have a code that's simpler and is predictable. that is not happening with the bill that's being recommended by the budget committee. so many of the provisions of temporary. it's a partisan process. it didn't simplify the tax code. and there certainly is not going to be predictability on provisions that have sunsets and termination dates. the final bill could even be much worse. as i said, the bill coming out of the budget committee that's getting all this attention is certainly not going to be the bill that we vote on at the end of the day sometime as i've been told could be as early as tomorrow. it's going to be a different bill. it's being negotiated now in closed sessions in which republicans are meeting trying to get their last couple votes. we don't know what the changes are going to be. but at the end of the day we're going to be printed a -- presented a gift bill but that's not going to be the final bill because it has to go to the house and there will be changes. there are things in the house that will have us upset. are we not going to be able to
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deduct medical expenses if you have an extraordinary need in your family? in the house bill you can't deduct those expenses. or student loans, interest costs you can't deduct in the house bill. are they going to end up in the final bill we're going to be called to vote on in the senate? one thing is clear, the bill will only get worse and get more expensive and it's going to cause greater damage to our already too large deficit. mr. president, there's a better way. there is a better way. and that is true bipartisanship. let's come together and work together. i'm very proud of the work that i've done in my career here in the senate and the house. in the house i worked with then-congressman portman. and the two of us worked together with stakeholders to change our retirement policies in this country for retirement savings. and we were able to get bills not only enacted but made permanent, even though we didn't necessarily have the political support of our leadership, we had the support of the american people and we had a bipartisan
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process and we used all the stakeholders and we came to good policy changes and more people have retirement savings as a result of those efforts. that's the type of efforts we need to put on for tax reform. democrats and republicans working together so that we can have a predictable tax code moving forward. there's a better way for job growth in this country. i heard the -- my republican friends say that this bill will create up to a million jobs. $1.5 trillion to $2 trillion creating jobs? we had a bill in the last congress that we could revise immediately to take the repairtration funds, the corporate money that's locked overseas, bring it back here -- i'll put an amendment in on the senate finance committee to try to get this done. a couple hundred billion dollars could come back p into this country. we could use this for infrastructure, which creates 4 million to 5 million jobs for a fraction of the cost. we could do better than spending
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this type of money for the type of jobs that are predicted. as i started by saying, i thought one of the guiding principles was to help middle-class families. this bill doesn't do it. let's join together as democrats and republicans and do what's right for middle-income taxpayers in this country. i yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
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mr. cardin: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from from maryland. mr. cardin: i ask unanimous consent that the quorum call be dispensed with. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. cardin: mr. president, on december 1, it will be the world's aids day, and i take this time to ask consent to put into the record my statement in regards to the progress we've made in regards to conquering hiv-aids and the work we still have ahead. the presiding officer: without objection. mrs. gillibrand: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from new york. mrs. gillibrand: i rise too speak about the taxpayer plan we
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will be voting on tomorrow, likely in the middle of the night and definitely without much-needed debate, oversight, and transparency as it should have. i think everyone in this chamber agrees that we need to fix our tax system so that it doesn't do -- keep doing so much difficulty for our working families in our states. if this bill actually did that, it would be real reform and it would be bipartisan. however, this plan does not seek anything close to the type of relief that regular working people need. instead, what it did is this. it pays back wealthy donors and lobbyists through corporate welfare, and it does this at the expense of the middle class. in other words, this is a blatant attempt to take millions of families' hard-earned money and hand it over to rich corporations on the fortune 500 list. at the senate actually goes ahead and passes this bill,
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corporations and the wealthiest 1% of income earners will get massive and permanent tax cuts, and it will blow a $1.5 trillion hole into our deficit. and make no mistake, three months from now, the republican leadership will use that new massive deficit as the reason to cut social security, medicare, and medicaid. why are republicans in congress so determined to provide massive corporate welfare? listen to this actual quote from one republican member of congress, which will tell you everything you need to know about who this tax plan is really for. he said, quote, my donors are basically saying, get it done or don't ever call me again. mr. president, this is washington's culture of soft corruption at its absolute worst.
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and now somehow, after years of talking about it, a massive tax bill has finally made its way to the senate floor. and after all that talk, it doesn't even help the middle class. it does the exact opposite. here's one very simple example that sums it all up. this bill eliminates the deduction for local and state taxes known as the salt deduction, which so many americans need to help them stay afloat. the salt deduction prevents hardworking families from being double-taxed on their income. it has long been our policy that when workers pay their state and local taxes, the i.r.s. doesn't tax them twice on the same income. but the republican tax plan now repeals this. in effect, this plan would make it so that if you are taxed on everything you make and then you will be taxed again.
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why? because corporations need a big tax break to pay for the tax breaks for the richest americans. in many cases, the salt deduction makes it possible for families to afford to buy a home, which is usually a family's largest asset, and it keeps the value of this investment growing. eliminating the salt deduction would hurt new yorkers, it would hurt millions of americans. there's literally no other way to spin it. mr. president, when the details of this tax plan were released, we started hearing a lot of dredged-up old talk about the supposed virtues of trickle-down economics, the myth that if only corporations had more money, it would help american families. well, we've heard this one before, and let's not be fooled again. let's take a look at the state of things right now. the biggest companies in america are flush are cash. the stock market has never been higher. but cities, towns, and rural
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areas all over my state have hit -- have been hit hard over and over again by companies that have packed up and left for cheaper labor and fatter profits abroad. so then why would we reward them by giving them yet another tax cut that they don't need and won't go to their workers? president trump's top economic advisor recently asked a room full of c.e.o.'s to raise their hands if this extra cash from the tax cut would get them to reinvest in their communities. no more than a handful of c.e.o.'s in the room raised their hands. i know a lot of people like to pretend otherwise, but is that really a surprise to anyone here? in fact, several c.e.o.'s have said on the record that instead of hiring more workers or raising their pay, many companies will reward shareholders -- not workers --
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by increasing dividends or buying back their own shares. this plan could not be more misguided because we should be rewarding work, not shareholder value. or let me put it another way. just yesterday the dow broke another record with a new all-time high, and i am sure many c.e.o.'s will get a massive bonus for that. but what i want to know is this. when the dow broke that record, how many workers on factory floors in pennsylvania or in new york saw their pay increase? how many workers in grocery stores saw their pay increase? how many families in your state were given big pay raises that reflected those historic profits? i think we all know the answer to that question. in our economy today, even as
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corporations are earning more money than ever before, there is essentially no benefit for families. the wealth does not trickle down. and this tax plan would make that problem even worse. mr. president, this tax plan helps the wrong people. it helps the people and corporations that don't need an extra help right now. it ignores the people who do. we need to start rewarding work in this country again, not doling out lavish tax cuts for giant companies. and i can't say this clearly enough to new yorkers and to hardworking americans all over this country. if you are not rich, if you are just a regular, hardworking family, then there is a very good chance that you are going to take a big hit if this bill passes. so i urge every one of my colleagues to do what's right for families and oppose this
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plan. tax reform should never be a partisan exercise, and we should all agree that our goal should be to help middle-class workers and their families. so let's pass a bill that actually does that. huge corporations do not need our help. they're going to be just fine. instead, let's finally start rewarding work in this country again. i yield the floor. the presiding officer: the senator new jersey. mr. menendez: mr. president, i come to the floor today painfully aware of the many reasons to oppose this reckless, wasteful republican tax bill.
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it's a shame because i still believe we need smart tax reform that puts working families and small businesses first and that prepares america to compete in the 21st century. but that's not what we will be voting on this week. we're voting on the trump tax plan this week, a plan republicans hope to ram through the senate with a simple majority vote, 51 votes. with 51 votes, republicans will raise taxes on millions of middle-class families and those working to join the middle class. with 51 vote, republicans will hand huge tax cuts to big corporations, with no strings attached. no guarantees that workers will see higher wages. with 51 votes, there will estem cell health care coverage -- they'll take health care
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coverage away from 15 million americans and hike premiums for everyone else. they'll saddle our children and grandchildren, like my new grandchild with another $1.5 trillion -- trillion -- in debt. now, anyone of these -- now, any one of these reasons is reason enough to oppose the trump tax plan. but for me as the senior senator of new jersey, a state of nearly 9 million people, a state with the eighth most productive economy in america, i cannot and will not support a tax bill that reads like one giant hit job on new jersey's middle class. just how bad is the trump tax plan for new jersey? well, take the house version, a bill so all of that 11 out of 12 members of congress from new jersey voted against it, many of them republicans, and take that
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plan and make it worse in the senate. the senate bill is worse because it totally eliminates the state and local tax deduction, otherwise known as the salt deduction. even president trump's external economic advisor larry kudlow recently said, ending the salt deduction will hurt a lot of different people. and a lot of those people who will get hurt live in states like new jersey. in 2015 alone, nearly 1.8 million new jersey households deducted a combined $17 billion in state and local taxes from their federal tax bills. over 1.5 million new jersey homeowners with sky-high property taxes deducted nearly $15 billion that same year.
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these taxpayers aren't high rollers. they're middle-class families who had to work hard to achieve the american dream. in fact, tax data tells us that 83% of new jerseyans who claim the state and local tax deduction make under $200,000 a year, and about half of those make under $100,000 a year. so the families who get hurt live in every corner of our state, from ocean county where it will cost taxpayers $1.3 billion to burlington county where it will cost taxpayers $1.37 billion, to passaic county where it will cost taxpayers $1.16 billion in deductions. that's wrong. it's just plain wrong to ask these hardworking families, folks who weren't born with a silver spoon in their mouth, who had to work hard for every
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dollar they have, who had to fight their way into the middle class, it's wrong to ask them to pay more just so that big corporations pay less, and do so permanently. and those born to multimillion-dollar inheritances pay nothing, nothing at all. ending the state and local tax deduction will literally force new jersey families to pay taxes twice on the same money. and rubbing salt in their wounds is the fact that republicans let corporations keep on deducting their state and local taxes on top of the huge tax cuts lavished on them by the trump tax plan. so in protecting the state and local tax deduction is so important for big corporations
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that make billions of dollars a year, surely my republican colleagues can imagine how important it is for a middle-class family in a state like new jersey to keep it. so, quite frankly, i'm sick and tired of congress treating states like new jersey like america's piggy bank. my constituents already pay too much in taxes. new jerseyans can't afford to subsidize the rest of america more than we already do. and yet, republicans now want to dig even deeper into the wallets of new jersey's middle class with the trump tax plan. so to borrow an old phrase, as you come into new jersey from the lower trenton bridge, what new jersey makes, the g.o.p. takes. now some have speculated that this tax bill was designed to punish americans who lived in so-called blue states, and certainly -- i don't know, i wouldn't put it past an administration as cynical as this one to punish states that
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voted against trump in the 2016 election. but ultimately, mr. president, this isn't about red states or blue states. it's time we start calling these states what they really are. these aren't blue states. they're america's blue-chip states. they're america's innovation states, america's economic powerhouse states, states like new jersey are home to millions of makers, not takers, and we're proud of it. but our success didn't happen overnight. it didn't happen by accident. new jersey's success is predicated on our priorities and our investments. new jersey is a donor state precisely because we invest in public schools and higher education so that new jerseyans continue driving innovation in fields like biotechnology, agriculture and medicine. new jersey is a donor state precisely because we invest in mass transit and infrastructure
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so that workers can commute to high-paying jobs, whether in new york city or philadelphia or in the financial district in places like jersey city and hoboken and family and friends in nearby states can easily travel to the jersey shore. new jersey is a donor state precisely because we invest in public health and law enforcement, because we're stronger when we have safe communities and a healthy workforce. in fact, the fraternal order of police says that ending the state and local tax deduction will hurt states' ability to recruit the men and women that keep us safe. that's their quote. in short, new jersey is a donor state. we see here the states that are ranked by the deduction, their per capita income, their education rank. there's a correlation. it's a donor state because we believe in opening the doors of opportunity to as many people as possible. that's how a small state like new jersey continues to punch
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above its weight economically, to the benefit of all americans. and especially americans who live in less productive states that are more reliant on federal spending. for more than a century the state and local tax deduction has encouraged states to invest in education and infrastructure and opportunity for all. and it's ironic that republicans who talk so much about supporting the states want to single out those like new jersey and virginia and massachusetts that invest in the middle class. that's why senator cantwell and i will be introducing an amendment to protect the state and local property tax deduction, and i hope a majority of our colleagues see the value in that. for as long as i can remember, i've heard my colleagues on the republican side talk about protecting, not punishing, success. no matter how you slice it, ending, limiting, or capping the state and local tax deduction is a massive tax on
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the success of states like new jersey. the trump tax plan will raise taxes on millions of middle-class families across america not in a few years, not in a decade. immediately. and i refuse to support a tax bill that enriches the few at the expense of the many. that saddles our children with trillions in debt, that sets the stage for republican cuts to medicare, medicaid, and social security. because when that debt rises, the next thing we hear, we've got to deal with entitlement, but not about the entitlements given to corporations permanently. and that punishes the success of millions of hardworking middle-class families in states like new jersey. that's not something i'm willing to do. with that, mr. president, i yield the floor. i yield the floor.
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a senator: mr. president. the presiding officer: the senator from colorado. mr. bennet: thank you, mr. president. i have a few minutes today of time on the floor, so i want to be relatively brief. i want to share with you a chart that shows what's actually happening as a result of this proposed tax bill. here's what's happening. there are 572,000 taxpayers. that's about half a million taxpayers in america that are fortunate enough to make more than $1 million a year. as a result of this proposed plan, they will receive $34 billion in tax cuts. they'll receive $34 billion in tax cuts this year, next year, the year after that. that's an average tax cut of roughly $59,000 a person.
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$34 billion going to 572,000 taxpayers. what about the middle-class people that the republicans claim this bill is about? well, there are 90 million taxpayers. not half a million. 90 million taxpayers that make $50,000 or less. you know what they get under this bill, mr. president? they don't get $34 billion. by the way, if you include that estate tax, that number is $39 billion, $40 billion. they get $14 billion. that's an average tax cut per taxpayer of $160 a year. and that's in 2019. that's the best year that these guys have. after that it goes negative. $160 a taxpayer is equivalent to $7.50 a paycheck. i suppose in one year one could say there's a $7.50 tax cut a paycheck, that doesn't sound like a tax bill that's a
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middle-class tax bill to me. these are the tax cut levels under the republican plan. also in 2019, this is the $59,000 number. if you're making between $40,000 and $50,000, you get there $492. if you're making between $10,000 and $20,000, you get $8 and so on and so forth. there is nothing about about the tax cut proposal. i was asked by somebody today how could these republicans go home and explain in the states that donald trump won, how could they explain that they voted -- that they didn't vote for this tax bill? when i was saying i think we still have a chance to defeat this tax bill. they said how can you say that? how can somebody go home? i can't wait to go home to rural counties in my state that voted 80% for donald trump, 75% for
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donald trump, and tell them that i voted against this tax bill. my only regret is i won't be able to tell them i voted against it twice. they're not stupid. people in washington think that somehow by selling something based on percentages or selling something based on rates that people aren't going to understand what's actually happening to their after-tax income. my farmers and ranchers will understand that. they voted for a guy who said he was going to washington to drain the swamp. they voted for a guy who said he was going to go to washington and not help the rich people or the rich, as the president says. they voted for a guy who said that he was going to defend, support, fight for what he called the forgotten man. it turns out that when the rubber hits the road, we see the same movie that was happening before he got here,
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unless you want to argue that the forgotten man is making more than $1 million in an economy where people at the top earn more of that economy than they ever have, at least since 1928, if you want to make that argument, you can. my farmers and ranchers won't believe you. they will not believe that argument. this is a disgraceful bait and switch. and wait till you have to tell them that in order to make that tax cut for the wealthiest people in america, you're going to borrow the money from their children. you're going to borrow the money from the children of people here to pay for the tax cuts at this end. you're going to borrow the money through teachers' children and police officers' children and firefighters' children. you're going to blow a $1.5 trillion to $2.5 trillion deficit.
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today j.p. morgan came out. j.p. morgan came out and said this will result in the largest nonrecession deficit this country has ever had since world war ii. that's what j.p. morgan said. we do have problems in this economy. in colorado, we've got problems because even though we've got one of the most dynamic economies in the country, middle-class families are still having a hard time paying for early childhood education. they're having a hard time paying for housing. they're having a hard time paying for higher education, which this bill makes even worse. they're having a hard time paying for health care, which this bill makes even worse. you can't even make it up. they're taking health care away from 13 million americans in a tax bill. and the congressional budget office tells us that because of the tax cuts they are producing
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here for the wealthiest americans, there's going to be an automatic cut to medicare of $25 billion in january. so i say let's go out to those 80% trump counties and 70% trump counties in colorado and have a debate. they are not going to like what's in this plan. they will hate what's in this plan. it's the opposite of what they were told they were voting for. and so what i would implore my colleagues is, before i yield the floor, is that we stop this. let's stop this bill. this bill doesn't deserve to be on the floor of the senate. it's a disgrace. there was not a single hearing in the committee of jurisdiction, the finance committee, about this bill. not one hearing about a bill that touches every recess of our economy. it touches every household in our economy. it's been 31 years since we did
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tax reform, and back then we did it right, in a bipartisan way. this time we don't even have the decency to have a single hearing so the american people can hear what's in this bill and make a judgment about whether it's a good bill or not a good bill. and i'm telling you, i know what they're going to say when they know what the details are. we should stop this, and we should work in a bipartisan way. my colleague from florida is here on the floor, and i know how important the child tax credit is to him. and my colleague from utah. it's important to me too. that's the basis for a deal. i believe that the corporate rate is not competitive with the rest of the world. that's the basis for a deal. but borrowing money from middle-class taxpayers to finance $34 billion in tax cuts for 572,000 people is not a basis for a deal. and the american people are not going to be fooled by this.
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they're too smart for this. mr. president, i yield the floor. mr. rubio: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from florida. mr. rubio: i ask unanimous consent that i be allowed to speak into a colloquy with my colleague, the senator from utah. the presiding officer: is there objection? without objection. mr. rubio: mr. president, hope that in tax reform we will try to do what we should do in all of our policies, that is, come up with ideas that are both pro-growth and pro-worker. there are a lot of good things in this tax bill, but we need to make it better. we can make it more pro-growth and more pro-worker, and senator lee from utah and i have a plan that helps us notify that direction, and -- that helps us move in that direction, and i'll describe it briefly. the and i him to have the opportunity to weigh in as well on this. on the pro-growth side, it is about becoming more economically competitive by lowering the corporate tax rate in united states, 3


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